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Old Vermin Squeezebox Dilemma... (36) RE: Squeezebox Dilemma... 25 Feb 11


Partly in response to Alan, I think there can be some serendipity in our choice of instrument.

It may not be that unusual that I started, or tried to, on guitars long ago when the world was young, and now mostly play melodeon or guitar or harmonica. Hidden in that simple statement is a quarter-century lapse from attempting to play anything - got too busy which I take to be a normal reason = and a shifting between instruments.

In recent years, guitar got going [again] first - classes, etc - and the harmonicas were played by ear in pub sessions. I loved the sound of a melodeon but resisted getting one because I did not understand them. First handling them at festival stalls confused the hell out me.

Probably the music theory I'd picked up for guitar in my 50s and some reading on the web plus of course listening helped me to eventually give in and get a D/G Pokerwork. This had a couple of completely unexpected benefits. The dreadful East German Anglo bought new in about 1972 suddenly made some sense and became more-or-less playable, in private at least. Going to Melodeons at Witney included some guidance on fingering - not using the same finger repeatedly on the same button - that fed back quite unconsciously into guitar playing. So there is interplay between instruments.

It is said that the first instrument is the hardest. And to quote Rollo Woods, the three secrets to playing an instrument are practise, practise and practise.

So that's my excuse for not getting started on the inherited fiddle or giving too much time to the couple of penny-whistles that somehow appeared. Come to think of it, my total spend on instruments so far - an E-Bay Pokerwork, a solid-top but not unfancy Yamaha acoustic and the other bits and bobs - is probably less than the list price of a new Pokerwork.

So different instruments do fit together to an extent. If the fiddle makes sense, give it a try.

Reverting to LdT's original question, if going to a session and travelling light, harmonicas and of course voice are the most portable.


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